Although it doesn’t have an official top 20 for players like CS:GO, some Dota 2 players are much better than others and you can see that in their team’s results. Even though you also see it in their MMR and their stats for professional games, the results of their team are the most important aspect.
If you’re looking for the best Dota 2 player of 2019, here’s a top 5 list to consider.
1. Anathan “ana” Pham
This player is the equivalent of Daniel Day-Lewis in the film industry. He is mostly absent and unseen throughout the season, and then happens to come back right before The International, goes in as an underdog with OG, and wins The Aegis of Champions. He’s done that twice now, in 2018 and again in 2019. This has made OG the best team in the history of Dota 2 and the only one to win The International twice.
When trying to assess who was the best Dota 2 player of 2019, ana should rank high on the list. His performances as OG’s carry at The International 9 were absolutely incredible. And everybody will remember his signature position 1 IO, which proved to be completely broken at the event.
2. Zhang “Eurus” Chengjun
Eurus, formerly known as Paparazi, is a Chinese player currently competing for Vici Gaming. In 2019, he succeeded in bringing his team two Major titles, three Major Grand Finals, and a 5th – 6th place at The International. Eurus currently plays the carry role for his team, but he is also known as one of the world’s best midlaners. A few years ago, when 1v1 competitions were being held at various events, the Chinese superstar won multiple times and proved himself to be second to none in terms of his understanding of the laning phase and the 1v1 match-up. Overall, Vici Gaming finished the second Dota Pro Circuit in 3rd place. 2019 marked a huge comeback for the Chinese organization, as prior to their title at DreamLeague Season 11, they hadn’t won a single important title in years.
3. Alexei “Solo” Berezin
Solo is one of the most experienced and talented captains in the history of the game. He joined Virtus.pro more than three years ago in 2016, and had three spectacular seasons with the CIS organization. In 2019, Solo led his team to three top 3 results at various DPC Majors. He finished 2nd at The Chongqing Major, 2nd at DreamLeague Season 11, and 3rd at EPICENTER Major. These results were not enough for VP’s standards and three of the team’s players left at the end of the season. But when considered on their own, they constitute quite a performance. Few teams are capable of staying at the top with such consistency. Solo’s main weakness has been his inability to perform at his best at The International. Virtus.pro went into the biggest Dota 2 event of the year as one of the favorites for several years in a row, and yet they never managed to finish higher than 5th – 6th. But apart from that, the fact that VP ended the first two Dota Pro Circuits in 1st and 2nd place respectively clearly shows Solo’s ability as a captain.
4. Amer “Miracle-” Al-Barkawi
Miracle- is another player worth considering for the best Dota 2 player of 2019 award. With his former organization, Team Liquid, he managed to play in two Major Grand Finals as well as the TI9 Grand Final. Unfortunately for him, he lost all of these events, but it was remarkable that he was able to get so far at three of the six most important DPC tournaments. Even though his captain KuroKy and the rest of his teammates have helped a lot in these achievements, Miracle-‘s impact still stands out. In the Dota 2 community, he’s known as the first player ever to achieve an MMR of over 9000.
Miracle-’s current team is Nigma, which is simply the former Team Liquid roster. After placing 2nd at The International 2019, KuroKy decided to go on his own and build a new esports organization. So far, Nigma’s results have been poor, but there’s plenty of time left until The International 2020.
5. Tal “Fly” Aizik
Fly is one of the 5-10 world-class captains of this esport. He has played for a number of teams and has achieved an impressive level of success: Fly won four Majors and got a 3rd place at The International. In 2019, Fly got two 3rd place results at two DPC Majors and a decent result at The International 2019: 5th – 6th. His contributions to EG led the team to excellent results and an overall consistency that EG had lacked prior to his coming.
In many cases, it is difficult to assess an individual’s contribution to a team because it’s always a group effort that brings the top results. But in Fly’s case, it’s quite clear that his leadership skills have transformed EG and have brought them exactly what they were lacking: discipline.